Belgian designer Christian Wijnants wins 2013 International Woolmark Prize

Christian Wijnants from Belgium – 2013 International Woolmark Prize winner

Belgian designer Christian Wijnants was announced the winner of the 2013 International Woolmark Prize, the only major fashion award dedicated to designers working with wool. Christian Wijnants took home a €77,200 cash prize and the opportunity to be stocked in the most important boutiques around the globe including Harvey Nichols – London, Bergdorf Goodman – NY, 10 Corso Como – Milan, Joyce – China, David Jones – Sydney and Eickhoff Königsallee – Germany. Christian Wijnants wool collection will be available in partner retailers globally as of September 2013.

Natalie Massenet, Chairman of the British Fashion Council opened the event; a judging panel including Victoria Beckham, Donatella Versace, Diane von Furstenberg, Franca Sozzani and Tim Blanks selected the winner.

“Christian invented a new shape and made it possible with an industrial production process,” explained Franca Sozzani, Editor-in-chief of Vogue Italia and L’Uomo Vogue. “His designs are flattering, feminine and sexy, a modern interpretation of wool.”

Christian Wijnants capsule Merino wool collection featured at the awards was based on the simple idea ofstarting from a single white yarn and to explore all its potential. The designer worked with one type ofyarn in 100% Merino Wool, on seamless garments, knitted in one piece.

The leading theme was based on hand-knitting and hand-dyeing techniques, using deep colours inspired by crystals and minerals, and experimenting to obtain unique shades and avoid shrinkage.

Every piece was dyed with innovative techniques, and some of them unravelled and then re-knitted to create a unique irregular effect.

The International Woolmark Prize seeks outstanding and emerging talent from around the world, and we saw exceptional artisanship and design presented tonight. The prize is our commitment to supporting the future of the fashion industry and we are honoured to have received support from the global industry by way of ourpremier retail partners and judges both at the international and regional level,” explained Stuart
McCullough, The Woolmark Company Managing Director.